'Probe P50-M cash transfers to ghost beneficiaries'

MANILA, Philippines – Now there's no way for the administration to dismiss probe calls as politically motivated. 

Citing findings of the Commission on Audit (COA) that over P50 million in conditional cash transfer (CCT) was made to "ghost" beneficiaries, a congresswoman is seeking an investigation into the Aquino government's centerpiece anti-poverty program.

Gabriela Representative Emmi de Jesus on Thursday, January 9, called on the House committee on poverty alleviation to act on a resolution filed in 2013 by lawmakers belonging to the Makabayan bloc seeking to probe the CCT program.

"This COA report is ample proof that Congress should review President Aquino's dubious flagship poverty program," De Jesus said.

“When COA makes a report, they put the names of those that they claim they did not see. Together with COA personnel, we went through the listing from our database in the NHTS-PR and Pantawid Pamilya. On second pass, the names were there," Soliman said in a statement. 

Soliman, however, admitted that the DSWD has only liquidated 55% of the unliquidated disbursements cited in the COA report. 

The department vows to finish the liquidation by June 2014, Soliman told GMA News

The CCT program has been given a P62.6 billion budget for 2014, up by 42% from P44 billion last year. It is targeted to cover 4.3 million households, more than the 3.9 million targeted last year. – Angela Casauay/Rappler.com